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Eric: A Novel of Discworld Mass Market Paperback – July 30, 2013

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Editorial Reviews

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The latest in Pratchett's Discworld series plays a variation on the Faust theme. Eric is a singularly inept sorcerer who conjures up an even more inept wizard, Rincewind, and a sentient (also treacherous, vindictive, and unruly) footlocker named, of course, the Luggage. Not having got anything like what he bargained for, Eric is fated to go through the usual zany ordeals of a Pratchett protagonist, until he wishes he'd never been born. Nor do things really all work out in the end, even if Eric is better off than he expected to be through most of the book. The Discworld books are building a following that is beginning to resemble that of Piers Anthony's Xanth stories, although it can be said that Pratchett is rather more sophisticated than Anthony. In any case, there should be a lot of readers for this one. Fantasy collections, provide accordingly. Roland Green --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


'He is screamingly funny. He is wise. He has style.' -- Daily Telegraph --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: Discworld (Book 9)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (July 30, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062237330
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062237330
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.4 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (142 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,082 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Terry Pratchett sold his first story when he was fifteen, which earned him enough money to buy a second-hand typewriter. His first novel, a humorous fantasy entitled The Carpet People, appeared in 1971 from the publisher Colin Smythe. Terry worked for many years as a journalist and press officer, writing in his spare time and publishing a number of novels, including his first Discworld novel, The Color of Magic, in 1983. In 1987 he turned to writing full time, and has not looked back since. To date there are a total of 36 books in the Discworld series, of which four (so far) are written for children. The first of these children's books, The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents, won the Carnegie Medal. A non-Discworld book, Good Omens, his 1990 collaboration with Neil Gaiman, has been a longtime bestseller, and was reissued in hardcover by William Morrow in early 2006 (it is also available as a mass market paperback (Harper Torch, 2006) and trade paperback (Harper Paperbacks, 2006). Terry's latest book, Nation, a non-Discworld standalone YA novel was published in October of 2008 and was an instant New York Times and London Times bestseller. Regarded as one of the most significant contemporary English-language satirists, Pratchett has won numerous literary awards, was named an Officer of the British Empire "for services to literature" in 1998, and has received four honorary doctorates from the Universities of Warwick, Portsmouth, Bath, and Bristol. His acclaimed novels have sold more than 55 million copies (give or take a few million) and have been translated into 36 languages. Terry Pratchett lives in England with his family, and spends too much time at his word processor.  Some of Terry's accolades include: The Carnegie Medal, Locus Awards, the Mythopoetic Award, ALA Notable Books for Children, ALA Best Books for Young Adults, Book Sense 76 Pick, Prometheus Award and the British Fantasy Award.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Lonya VINE VOICE on September 9, 2005
Format: Mass Market Paperback
to assume a pleasing shape according to Hamlet but only on Discworld could the devil or any demon assume the shape of Rincewind. But that is exactly what Terry Pratchett calls up in "Eric", Pratchett's Discworld homage to Faust.

Eric, the protagonist, is a teenaged `demonologist' from Pseuodopolis. Eric is also a spoiled brat according to Eric's parrot. Eric was trying to summon a demon in order to have the demon grant Eric's wish for power, women, and eternal life. Instead, through a series of Discworldian circumstances Eric calls up Rincewind, last seen locked in the Dungeon Dimensions (Sourcery).

What follows is a Discworld version of a Hope and Crosby Road movie that parallels Faust. Eric and Rincewind travel to the ends of time (actually the beginning of time among other places) and Rincewind faces adversity and the threat of death in his own inimitable fashion (feet don't fail me now).

There are some great set pieces in Eric. DEATH makes two brief, but very funny appearances. First, when the Wizards determine something strange is going on they summon DEATH and demand answer. Of course, they realize quickly that perhaps they should speak to him in the same manner that people in Ankh Morpork speak to the Patrician. Later in the book, DEATH patiently awaits the moment for life to begin is priceless Pratchett fashion. Having the universe start with a paper clip and not a big bang was a very appealing concept.

Similarly hilarious is Rincewind's trip to the new and improved version of hell. Physical torture has been replaced by endless viewings of someone else's holiday slides, elevator music, and the recitation of thousands of pages of regulations only a hellish bureaucrat could construct.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Jolley HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 31, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When last we left the inept wizard Rincewind (way back in Sourcery, the fifth Discworld novel) he was trapped in the Dungeon Dimensions. He returns quite unexpectedly to the real world at the behest of the unique planet's only demon hacker Eric, who also happens to be a twelve-year-old kid. Having conjured a demon to grant him whatever he desired, Eric is rather disappointed to find that the "demon" Rincewind cannot really do anything at all except give lessons in how to run away from danger. All Eric wants is to rule the world, meet the most beautiful woman to have ever lived, and to live forever. Rincewind insists that he can't just snap his fingers and grant wishes, but said finger snapping miraculously takes him, Eric, and (always lagging behind) the Luggage to the land of the Tezumens where Eric is hailed as a god (pity the Tezumens hate their god so much). Later they wind up in ancient Tsort during the climax of the great war with the Ephebians; here Eric meets the world's most beautiful woman and is not impressed, while Rincewind finds an ancient ancestor pursuing the art of war without having to fight or creating a fuss. Next stop is the very creation of the Discworld itself, complete with creator-if you want to live forever, after all, you have to start at the beginning. The journey is far from complete, though, until Rincewind and Eric make their way to Hades, a land suffering (or not suffering, to be precise) under the micro-management of the new King Astfgl. Finally, we find out what has really been going on all along, and Rincewind and Eric try to find a way to get back home.
Eric is a play on the Faust concept; you can tell because the word Faust is crossed out and replaced with Eric right there on the cover of the book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By EA Solinas HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on July 2, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Possibly the shortest and most plotless Discworld novel, "Eric" nevertheless has some enjoyable commentary and spoofing, two of the things that Terry Pratchett does well and delightfully. Hardly his best, but not his worst.
In the aftermath of "Sourcery," Rincewind is lost in the Dungeon Dimension. But in a million-to-one-chance, he is drawn back into the real world by a fourteen-year-old demonolist awash in hormones and delusions of grandeur. Eric is convinced that Rincewind is a demon, and is demanding three things: that Rincewind make him live forever, give him control of the entire Disc, and give him the most beautiful woman in the world. Rincewind, unsurprisingly, can't do these things.
An unwary snap of the fingers sends Eric, Rincewind, the Luggage, and a very sarcastic parrot to the land of the Tezumens, who serve the bloodthirsty demon-god Quetzovercoatl. Their misadventures in the void of non-creation, back in time to the topless towers of Tsort, and finally to hell itself give Eric what he wishes -- or does it?
The first word that comes to mind to describe "Eric" is SHORT. This book is slim even with the larger typeface and margins, but in Pratchett's spare style it packs a fair amount of story into the 200 pages. Old favorites like Rincewind and the Luggage return; Eric steals many of the scenes he's in, as he is obsessed with women and power, but whiny and immature - a teen boy with delusions of grandeur.
Pratchett adds some delightful spoofing of the Aztecs, especially their preoccupation with human sacrifice and feathered headdresses, and the Trojan War (in which we meet his versions of Odysseus and the relatively plain Discworld counterpart of Helen of Troy), complete with "toppleless towers" and a wooden horse.
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